Dr. Horton describes what a bunion is and if high heels cause these.
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So one of the dreaded problems that affects woman today is the bunion disorder or what we call hallux valgus in the medical community. And that is essentially a bent toe that is compounded by a large swelling and pain on the inside of the big toe joint, and what happens in this condition is, the ligaments on this side of the bone get stretched out, and the tendons that normally elevate the toe start to pull the toe sideways along with the smaller muscles in the foot such that that joint then becomes imbalanced, and then once it becomes imbalanced, then it stays like that and becomes very contractive. So over time people develop terrible deformities, not only in their big toe, but also in their second toe, which they can even become overriding. These problems, once they become that involved, they can only be resolved with surgery, and there are very different types of surgeries for different levels of severity of the bunion. Some involve just soft tissue reconstructions; other involve actual cutting of the bone and realigning the joint such that it becomes balanced once again. But the biggest nemesis for women is the fact that the high-heeled footwear is a predisposing risk factor for the development of a bunion disorder. So, use caution in the amount and frequency that you use high-heeled shoes.